Thursday, December 7

Review: Plantera [ Nintendo Switch eShop ]

Sometimes the hustle and bustle of a long day calls for some shooting people in the face but there are also times when it’s nice to settle back and play something to help soothe your nerves. Stardew Valley and the likes of Farming Simulator have their appeal in this space but even those have larger objectives and strategies at play, sometimes it is nice to veg out a little while having some fun. That’s roughly where Plantera comes into the mix, bringing a simple combination of farming, a basic life sim, and a dash of whack-a-mole (or bird or rabbit or fox) to the mix as well.

There’s no real story or overarching theme, to start you’ll just have one little blue dude who is your helper and the ability to plant some carrots. From that humble start you’ll be looking to slowly cultivate and expand, adding land, unlocking new plants and animals, filling in your mini garden empire and furiously trying to defend it from pests who would steal your food or livestock. You can interact with things, and in the interests of making money quicker you may want to pick your plants since at some point your little guys simply aren’t going to be able to easily keep up! Aside from the progression system of unlocks tied to your overall level and both collecting coins and spending them along the way to pay for new upgrades or expansion that’s the majority of what you’ll need to know.

Plantera is simple, generally serene, has steady progression, and provides some simple satisfaction of watching your little sort of farm grow from nothing into something more elaborate. It lacks any sort of complexity but that’s also a big part of its charm for the right audience. If you’re looking for something to just help you relax, or perhaps want to get a game that could probably be played and enjoyed by people of just about any age, Plantera is a chilled out match.

Score: 6

  • A dose of relatively stress-free serenity
  • Cute and simple

  • Nothing more than what it is, and that ultimately isn’t very much
  • Even moderately hardcore gamers will likely hate it within seconds

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